We make community arts projects. These are usually performance based, and often take place outside in interesting and unusual locations. We also make exhibitions, guided tours and walks, audio pieces, films and web based material. We are continually looking to develop new ways of working and to create projects that are a mix of all of the above, in the belief that this gives us the greatest chance of engaging the largest number of participants and the most diverse audience. But in our D.N.A we are a theatre company.
We are always interested in new ideas from wherever they come. Excavate projects are nearly always partnerships. Sometimes we develop a project concept and look for those who will be interested in helping us to shape and deliver this, and at other times organisations come to us with an idea. We have worked with all sorts of groups of many different sizes – local councils, universities, the Church of England, schools, arts festivals, Boots and local community organisations.
Generally we like to plan a project a year in advance, although if the bull does need to be taken by the horns then we can do that. We can help to identify funding sources and make any applications that will be necessary to make the work happen. Much of what we do up to now has been funded by Arts Council England and the Heritage Lottery Fund, although these are not our only funding sources.
We can deliver all aspects of a project and once we begin work we rarely need much in the way of support around us. Of course if the most important part of a project is community engagement and participation – and this, along with artistic quality are usually the reasons for being engaged to work with people – then the more help you or your organisation can do to promote this the better. Having bodies on the ground is often the best way of letting people know what is happening. And we hope that by working with us that your organization or group can develop skills that will allow you to go on to develop similar projects in the future, with or without our help.
There are no fixed budgets for this type of work. Outside performances do have technical and staging costs attached to them. Participation projects do have costs attached to the amount of time it may be necessary to work in and with a community to develop trust and create the quality of work that will ensure there is a thirst for similar projects in the future.
If you have an idea, or would simply like to know more about who we are, what we do, and the ways in which we may be able to work alongside the communities you are a part of, then please email firstname.lastname@example.org We are always happy to come along to talk to you about the way that we work and the projects we have done in the past. Having done so many now we usually find that there is something from our back catalogue that can help you to understand how we may work in your context. (And of course we are always available for talks or workshops if you would rather get to know us a little better first).